Year 2!
Daisypath Ticker

Monday, April 23, 2007
I Was Here
My dear friend Rony celebrated a milestone recently, and chose to spend his big day among family and friends back home in Manila. I suppose I could describe the evening as musical, but it was really more magical than that. Theater music filled the air, and the voices of theatre angels took centerstage right alongside the music-maker himself. Nothing was rehearsed, as there was really no need. Anyone who has ever sung with Rony on the piano will know what I mean.

Taking my turn on the microphone brought back a flood of memories. Glittery evenings in hotel ballrooms, open air stages, nerve-wracking auditions, hilarious lounge gigs, intricately arranged melodies, forgotten lyrics, made-up new ones, voices soaring, voices blending in not one, not two, not three--but 5-part harmonies! Without a doubt, those moments made up some of the best years of my life. And Rony figured prominently in most of them.

Opening the show with a song he wrote himself, entitled "How Do You Open A Show?", Rony graciously gave the floor to his singing guests before ending the evening with a simple, but very touching rendition of a Lynn Ahrens & Stephen Flaherty showstopper called "I Was Here", from the musical The Glorious Ones. Check out Patti Lupone's version!

Take in the lyrics and see why theater people--who, in my opinion, are the greatest, most fabulous people on earth--do what they do. Why I do what I do.

I Was Here
by Lynn Ahrens & Stephen Flaherty

I've gone without bread. I've slept in the mud
I've given my best while they've screamed for my blood
I've begged and I've bullied for any small chance to perform
At nights I've awakened, my guts in a knot
Remembering how much I gave up and for what
Some paints and some costumes, a pitiful tent in a storm
A handful of coins, a trunk always packed
No family, no home, just this madness to act
Still I have a theory about this disease we contract
That most men are equally crazy as actors in fact

Why does a boy carve his name on a tree
Or the firstborn inherit the throne
What is a sculptor aspiring to be
When he spends half his life carving stone
Kings build their tombs for the ages
Poets and fools fill up their pages
What are we hoping for, what do we fear
I say we yearn to leave something that lasts
To be known for what little we've done
Men tell their children the tales of their pasts
And each man gives his name to his son
Something in song or in story
Something in blood, something of glory
Something that won't fade away in a year

Well, I will not flicker and die like an ember
Too many men flicker and die
I will leave something behind to remember
Somehow I must, don't ask me why
I have no wealth, at least none I can claim
And no patience for carving in stone
All that I have are my skill and my name
And this chance to make both of them known
This is my key to the portal
How I can leave something immortal
Something that time cannot make disappear
Something to say I was here!

Way to go, Rony! May I just congratulate Angel, Joshua, and all those who put the evening together for a spectacular job done, well. . . spectacularly! Here's to your 31st!
posted by The White Rabbit at 9:21 PM | Permalink |

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